It’s always intriguing whenever we meet artists working and creating alongside their family. In any type of familial relationship, there’s inevitable power dynamics; it’s built in with good reason, as family is how we learn to structure relationships for the rest of our lives. The familiarity between kin can either greatly enhance or hinder creativity. Complacency can become easy when you know your partner has a real vested interest in you.
For Prevail and Neph, it’s been a seamless transition from family to collaborators. The uncle/nephew duo have been making music separately long before they stepped into the studio together. Prevail has a storied history in both Vancouver and Canadian rap. The self identified BC rapper has been creating with Swollen Members as well as pursuing solo ventures. Neph has had a lifetime to watch Prevail turn from amateur to expert, touring the world with Swollen Members. Prevail’s journey inspired Neph to pursue his own interests in art and music, but it was a while before Neph shared his recordings with Prevail, letting him know that hip hop really does run in their bloodline.
The result is Alpha Omega, their debut album together, slated for release this February. To hear their rationale for the title is poetic – Prevail being the Alpha and passing down wisdom to Neph, the Omega. It’s an unspoken equilibrium they seem to have reached; Neph, the vivacious newbie in hip hop is gently lead by Prevail, whose calm demeanour and skilled lyricism is no doubt an aspiration for his nephew.
The two are filled with playful banter, an ease that really does take decades to reach. Nowhere is this more apparent than on stage. As soon as Neph joined Prevail on stage at their Westcoast Renaissance tour, the two started a sparring that lasted throughout their set. Trading off to each other, the two spit fast, barely pausing for breath. Their elation at performing together is obvious, especially for Neph, who spent the entire time bouncing from end to end of the stage.
Their only pause was at the end of Viceroy, for a quick embrace, the spotlights on them, bond stronger than ever.
Video interview with the two coming shortly.